"This report explores evidence and insights from five case studies that have made significant recent progress in addressing the challenge of insuring poor smallholder farmers and pastoralists in the developing world. Evidence from these case studies can inform the ongoing debate about the viability of scaling up index-based insurance for vulnerable smallholder farmers in the developing world. The rapid progress observed in recent years suggests that index insurance has the potential to benefit smallholder farmers at a meaningful scale, and suggests the need to reassess arguments that lack of demand and practical implementation challenges prevent index-based insurance from being a useful tool to reduce rural poverty."
"A broad literature has found that the misallocation of entrepreneurial talent has strong effects on productivity. To investigate whether the government can improve entrepreneurial activity, we analyze a policy aimed at promoting innovative startups through the provision of funding and technical assistance to potential entrepreneurs in Buenos Aires, Argentina. We conduct a survey and use regression discontinuity methods to identify the effects of the policy. We find significant effects on enterprise creation and survival as well as on employment. Overall, we show that small-scale public policy can help entrepreneurs overcome a wide variety of barriers to firm entry and improve the allocation of their entrepreneurial talent."
"This dissertation explores the learning of social entrepreneurs in accelerators. Building on Jarvis' (2010) existential theory of learning, it conceptualises entrepreneurial learning as a process in which purposeful individuals encounter and transform experiences of disjuncture. These experiences are embedded in both human and material contexts. Learning processes and outcomes are portrayed as phenomena that are influenced by social entrepreneurs' interaction with these environments. Accelerators are depicted as non-formal contexts of learning, of relatively short duration - in which the structure and content of education is progressively adapted to the requirements of the individual."
"While business accelerators remain understudied in the academic literature, there is growing interest in understanding how accelerators work and where they provide value to entrepreneurs. In this paper, we focus exactly on this question – we examine how mentorship and investor ties, two key aspects observed across accelerators in general lead to positive accelerator outcomes and through them, to longterm firm success outcomes for the start-ups participating in accelerators. Using the full cohort (n=105) of an international accelerator, we follow the progress of the startups during the accelerated period and continue to follow these startups for 15 months. We find that startups that participate more in mentorship events have higher likelihood of achieving short-term outcomes during the accelerator, such as the release of a prototype and generating revenue for the first time. Similarly, startups that develop more investor ties during the accelerator survive and raise capital at a higher rate. Finally, we find evidence that certain short-term accelerator outcomes also increase the chances of survival and investment. On the basis of these results, we provide practical implications for start-ups as well as managers of accelerator programs, in addition to theoretical contributions to entrepreneurship research."
"The aim of this study was to deepen the understanding of the specific practices and methodologies that established impact investors are using to measure the social impact generated by their investments, and to analyze the conditions under which each measurement method is most relevant. The intended audience for our analysis is impact investors themselves, as well as social sector organizations, traditional funders, and evaluators."
"The World Economic Forum is pleased to release Leveraging Entrepreneurial Ambition and Innovation: A Global Perspective on Entrepreneurship, Competitiveness and Development, which examines the relationship of entrepreneurship and competitiveness from a fresh perspective. The report builds on and advances our extensive previous work on this issue. The study described in this report combines two unique data sets, the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index data, which ranks the economic competitiveness of 144 economies, and Global Entrepreneurship Monitor’s assessment of entrepreneurial activity across 70 economies."
"In this study, we evaluate the effect of innovation promotion programs administrated by the Colombian Innovation Agency (COLCIENCIAS). The evaluation focuses on programs that provide financial incentives for research and development (R&D)-matching grants and contingent loans-and encourage the formation of linkages among firms, universities, and other public research organizations. We use longitudinal firm-level data and adopt a fixed effects identification strategy to control for potential selection biases. The findings show that COLCIENCIAS financial incentives have increased labor productivity as a result of gains in total factor productivity (TFP) due to product diversification and, to a lesser extent, of capital intensification."
"Aid providers often describe small firms as 'job creators'. But what types of jobs do they create? Drawing on enterprise survey data for nine African countries and panel data for Ethiopia we find that small and large formal sector firms create similar numbers of net jobs. Small firms, however, have much higher turnover of employment and pay persistently lower wages. To create more 'good' jobs aid should target the constraints to the growth of firms of all sizes. Improving the 'investment climate' and new programs to increase firms' capabilities - through, for example, management training - offer greater prospects for employment creation."
"From launching a fund to exiting investments, this handbook provides an introduction to equity investment throughout Africa. The handbook presents a panorama of SGB investment in Africa, introduces equity investment methodology, and suggests a roadmap for launching an investment vehicle targeting African SGBs."
"This paper's aim is to describe two complementary approaches to mobile data management, in the hopes that these descriptions will both generate feedback from other organizations already engaged in similar efforts and be useful to organizations with similar goals and challenges. And whilst this paper describes the efforts of two impact investors we believe this work has implications beyond impact investing, including foundations, governments and NGOs."